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It is claimed that Butrint was settled by the Trojans, but despite many years of excavations, archaeologists have not found any evidence of this. What is sure is that Greeks settled Butrint in the 6th century BC and that before them the Illyrians inhabited the region. About 100 years after the arrival of the Greeks, Butrint was an important trading city and already included an acropolis, of which you can still see the ruins today. The theatre just below the acropolis was built in the 3rd century BC and it was also used by the Romans when they ruled the area. The public baths are not far away and if you go further into the forest you'll come to a wall with Greek inscriptions, as well as a baptistery that dates from the 6th century. At both those last two ruins, the remains of colorful mosaics are visible. The triangular fortress that dominates the site, was built at the beginning of the 19th century by warlord Ali Pasha Tepelena.

Before WWII, many antiquities where brought to Italy, but most of the items have been returned and are on display at the National Museum of History in Tiranë (Tirana). The ruins of Butrint are 16 km (10 miles) south of Saranda. From there, bus connections to Tiranë (Tirana) and Vlorë (Vlora) are available. Saranda is also the best place to look for accommodation when you want to visit the site at Butrint. The ruins are 180 km south of Tiranë and not far from the Greek border.

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